Are Oreos Vegan? Did PETA Get It Wrong On Oreos?

It’s very important to question what you eat as a vegan and that’s why we’re asking “are oreos vegan?” You see, it’s all too easy for a list of ingredients to lead you astray.

So, here’s what you need to know about Oreos. 

Are Oreos Vegan

Are Oreos OK On A Vegan Diet? PETA Says They Are

Yes, it’s true.

People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, PETA, told the world that Oreos were, indeed, vegan and then invited their audience to eat them and to consume a bunch of other snacks.

Now, of course, PETA does a lot of good things for vegans and they’re a super resource for those who want to live a cruelty-free lifestyle.

There’s only one problem. 

PETA vegan oreos

In fact, it’s important that you read this before you rush out to buy another packet of that chocolatey goodness. 

You see, it’s entirely possible that your Oreos aren’t vegan at all. 

The Ingredients In Oreos Are Vegan

Vegan Chocolate

What probably confused PETA was the fact that the ingredients that they list on a packet of Oreos most definitely are vegan.

A typical bunch of Oreo cookies includes sugar, some form of plant oil or palm oil or partially hydrogenated vegetable oil, High Fructose Corn Syrup or HFCS, salt, soy lecithin, chocolate, leavening, and cornstarch. 

Sure, that’s not exactly a who’s who of the healthiest ingredients on the face of the planet but there’s nothing there that’s remotely made of animals either. So, what’s up with Oreo cookies that stops them from being vegan snacks?

But The Oreos Website Has Something Else To Say On The Subject

Tiramisu Oreos Are They Vegan?

The trouble is that reading a list of ingredients doesn’t tell you the whole story of how a product is manufactured.

And over in the UK the Oreo’s website FAQ spells this out as clearly as possible.

Somebody asked “Are Oreos vegan?” and they said… they might be technically vegan but…

“No, Oreos have milk as a cross-contact and therefore they are not suitable for vegans.”

“Cross contact” is the same thing as “cross-contamination” in real terms.

Oreos May Contain Milk

Oreos May Contain Milk

It means that when they make Oreos, they may make them on the same line as other products which are made of milk. They do say that Oreos are milk’s favorite cookie and it’s true.

And that means that milk might sneak into the Oreos. This is true of any Oreo Cookie or Oreo biscuits even golden Oreos.

Given that it would be a.) incredibly expensive and b.) time consuming to test Oreos for traces of milk – they don’t. 

Therefore, the Oreos cookies aren’t vegan even if PETA says that they are.  So, do vegans eat Oreos? No, not if they’re following the letter of the law which requires them to avoid animal products at all costs.

And if you’re thinking that this is just the UK and not the USA – that’s not the case either.

The US PR Team for Oreos have confirmed that the process is exactly the same in the USA and that they do not market their products as suitable for vegans either.  Animal products may have contaminated the cookies, yes, even gluten-free Oreos.

If you want to confirm this, you can write to them and they’ll put it in writing for you.

Other Ethical Concerns About Oreos: Palm Oil and HFCS

Palm Trees Are A Vegan Concern

We’d also note that Palm Oil is hugely controversial for vegans at the environmental destruction wrought when producing it is horrific.

And HFCS is simply not healthy at all and many vegans would be wise to avoid it in their diet.

Last Word on Vegan Oreos

So, are Oreos vegan? Sadly, no they’re not. Sorry.

If you want some great vegan food products check out these oat milk brands and these vegan cheeses.  Sadly, there are no vegan Oreo alternatives on our radar as yet, maybe you know of some that we should check out? For now, we’ll stick with carrot cake.

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